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Q&A: Jane Chuck on leading her entrepreneurial journey with creativity

A happy marriage, a booming brand, and an inspirational influence — Jane Chuck is in a good place in her life.

There is a certain aura that fills the room when Jane Chuck walks in. A sort of confidence — that do-not-mess-with-me attitude that emanates through her piercing stare and assertive tone of voice. But behind that unflinching expression, Jane Chuck is a fun and easy-going person who doesn’t mind being goofy at times.

Her debut into the social media game started through her blogging days, and many years later, she’s a force to be reckoned with — as an influencer, content creator, and entrepreneur. Today, the name Jane Chuck serves as an inspiration to many aspiring influencers and followers of fashion, beauty, and lifestyle. For Jane, she has the power of branding to thank for a career that she’s enjoying today.

Unbeknownst to many, Jane only does the best when she sets her mind into doing something. Take her matrimony as a perfect example. It has been one of the most-talked events in 2019 when she flew to Mykonos, Greece with her posse for a destination wedding of a lifetime — followed by a show-stopping, all-white Christmas wedding in Grand Hyatt Kuala Lumpur that was dubbed as one of the most creative weddings of the year.

It is very telling that creativity runs in her blood as Jane expresses: “Being creative is a way for me to channel everything out and share my ideas. It felt natural to me to include a creative element in everything that I do.” And so she did when she started Chuck’s — a brand that is synonymous to beauty, lifestyle and self-love.

She is chartering her way towards a sustainable career while keeping watch for what her followers and the social media consumers are looking for. For Jane, it is not just about the content that is created but also for whom you’re creating it for. Her recent video content on YouTube serves as a perfect example of how she goes with the flow to produce things that resonate well with everyday people. This includes discussing topics like mental health and social behaviours, as well as chronicling important moments in her life.

But the road to be a successful entrepreneur and influencer is not a bed of roses. In our recent fashion shoot with her for Gucci Epilogue, Jane shares her plans for Chuck’s and expanding the business globally as well as her hopes to inspire young girls to go out there and do something for themselves.

Jane and her husband Hanpin at their wedding in Mykonos, Greece. (Photo: Sunrise Experience)

What have you been up to recently?

At the moment, I’m juggling between doing social media content and building the beauty brand Chuck’s as well as the lifestyle brand Motherchuckers.

Tell us a little bit about Chuck's.

It’s been a year since I started Chuck’s, and most recently, I’ve launched Motherchuckers that focuses on lifestyle essentials like everyday wear, hoodies and other lifestyle products. We also recently collaborated with Coffeeboy Club for a series of apparels. In fact, the name Motherchuckers was actually inspired by Gossip Girl. One of the main characters Blair is known to be in love with Chuck and she’s always saying “mother chuckers”. That’s when I thought that it goes with my brand, Chuck’s.

You’ve accomplished so much. What have you not accomplished that you want to?

Apart from travelling this year and completing the full fashion week experience, business wise, I would really want to get into the international market with Chuck’s and we are currently working on it.

What do you see when you look at yourself in the mirror? Do you like what you see?

Yes! When I hit that point in my life — I’m 28 now — I became very comfortable with being myself. I want to be that woman who can tell girls out there to not follow the norm. There’s no such thing as getting married and having kids at a certain age anymore. Many think that they may be happy when they are married and stuff, you know the social taboo. But I think that’s not the way forward.

Jane dressed in Gucci Epilogue. (Photo: Lifestyle Asia KL)
It is the age of self-love and self-care right?

Exactly — self-love and self-sufficiency. You have to really talk to yourself. Ask questions that you’re afraid to ask to be able to discover your inner self. Some people aren’t bothered to think about what they want; so they just accept advice or help from others. But is that what you’re looking for? People must remember that it is very important to spend time communicating with yourself.

What are the lessons you’ve taken away from this whole Covid-19 situation?

I cannot plan too much ahead and I’ve learnt to always have a plan B. When it comes to work, the best thing is that everything is basically online right now and that helps keep everyone connected. We have to accept the fact that this is going to be the new norm and speaking as both an entrepreneur and a regular person, we have to try to work around this in order to move forward with an open mind.

It sounds like your schedule is always packed. What do you when you’re not working?

I always enjoy taking time for myself apart from work. I find working out to be a great way for me to spend time with myself. It’s the one thing that keeps me focused, especially when I channel all my energy to my workout. It’s not about achieving a certain type of body, but more of a way to de-stress. So in the morning, I enjoy doing strength workout. But at night, I love going for spin classes to drain the excess energy out.

You’ve set yourself a new benchmark each time you’ve launched something under your eponymous brand. Tell us, what motivates you everyday and what brought you into entrepreneurism?

It goes back to being a blogger and social media influencer. When working with other brands, I’ve experienced different things along the way and also learned about brand guidelines. I also try to include some creativity into my content and I felt it is something natural for me to express my ideas. So when I started Chuck’s, it became my channel to let everything out. That’s why the business can be quite random — there’s a lot of different things, all created with love and in the name of creativity. Apart from that, I’m also motivated by the good reviews and what people share and say about what they love about the brand.

What are the main challenges of being an entrepreneur?

I didn’t see this coming to be honest. When I started Chuck’s, it was just the three of us – my product manager in Korea and a creative person. Now, we have about 10 people in the team. At the moment, I think the challenge would be managing the growth that I believe will take place very soon. Before this, I’ve run cafes but it’s very different from creating a brand. This whole experience has been something that is very new for me. I also believe that it is not just about starting a brand, but you also need to know your brand well, understand it, and put your creative spin to every aspect of the business.

And the biggest takeaway from creating a brand?

I didn’t come from a beauty background. I just simply loved fashion. On top of that, I believe many people wouldn’t know that I didn’t graduate from university, but I’ve always been in love with creative stuff. When I started this beauty brand, it is simply me, Jane Chuck, exploring the creative side of myself — I admit I’m not a professional in this field and that’s why I have an expert in Korea to manage that. So I’ve been more focused on the creative execution.

What has this entrepreneurial journey taught you so far?

Organising! (chuckles) But I think it is very important to learn your market and listen to your consumers. At the moment, we cannot create something and expect it to sell. So what we are doing is to create products with high demands — something that people want or need. Through Chuck’s, we are giving you something that some brands don’t — the creative element that makes Chuck’s special.

On a personal note, if you could turn back time, what would you tell your younger self?

You are doing great! At the moment, I am really happy for being who I am right now. A lot of things are unexpected but whatever I’ve done back then must have been the right thing. It has made me who I am today despite the silly decisions I’ve made in the past.

Jane believes that one should have empathy and be open minded when dealing with criticisms. (Photo: Lifestyle Asia KL)
And if you could change something in society, what would you do?

I think I will tell people to stop judging. When you stop judging, you will feel much better.

So how do you handle criticisms?

I think one should have empathy. When you’re open-minded, you won’t be quick to judge others. Everyone and every business are different. I’m not here to chase or change things but I’m here to fulfil my own dreams. When it comes to criticisms, you have to look into it and listen to what others have to say — but we don’t simply just change just to accommodate other people.

Lastly, what message would you like to send to your fans out there?

Always communicate with yourself and try out different things. People are not born knowing everything themselves, but you need new experiences to spark new ideas. With that, you’ll find that direction you need and the way to rediscover yourself. Stop worrying, even though it’s hard but work around trying new things every day.

Martin Teo
Editor
Martin has a bent for history and food culture, especially of the Peranakan heritage. Since the pandemic, he finds joy in plant parenting and continues to expand his collection of Philodendrons, Anthuriums, and Syngoniums. He's now on a lookout for the elusive Philodendron Florida Beauty to add to his urban garden.